Lying down at a bus stop will soon be illegal
Bus passengers can share the stories of bus stop encounters.
HONOLULU - Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed a new law Friday that could have a big impact. Lying down and obstructing a bus stop will be illegal starting in June.
Forced to stand off to the side while waiting for a ride, City councilman Trevor Ozawa says he first heard complaints from residents in Waikiki, Kaimuki and Kahala.
"I started to see other problems result from that. Less people wanted to use the public transportation, the busses would stop at different parts of the block which would impede traffic or turns... We think that it'll have a tremendous, positive impact in allowing people to get on and off the bus and use the public transportation system much more efficiently," Ozawa said.
Critics have been vocal about city laws they say criminalize the homeless, saying they need help, not crackdowns.
Still, riders seemed optimistic about the new law.
"Sometimes at night-time, I'm taking the bus maybe from Lanikai or Ala Moana and I won't wanna go near that bus stop just because there's somebody sleeping there and it's dark and it's nighttime and I'm alone. So definitely I think that'll be a better circumstance," Ashley Serry, a bus rider said.
"It's about time, and not just laying, just sitting there all day too. When there's like three or four of them and you have to stand and they don't care. I think it's a wonderful law," Margaret Glenn, another bus rider said.
There are a handful of exceptions, including young kids and people with medical conditions.
Violators could face a $50 fine when the law becomes effective.